She was a regular performer on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, where in one of her most memorable bits she channeled Patti Smith, singing about being an "angry woman" while doing tricks on a balance beam.

In 1986, she flew to New York to audition for SNL. Executive Producer Lorne Michaels, she remembers, curled his lower lip and lamented her lack of comedic characters. So the next time she was on Carson's show, she continued the audition by doing impressions of Diana Ross and Edith Bunker and inventing a character: a glum boss interviewing Carson for a job. She joined the SNL cast that season. With a new baby in tow, she and Eventoff bought a four-bedroom Colonial in Weston, Connecticut. They split time between the two homes.

But Michaels' trepidation had been spot-on. Jackson's cast mates included Chris Farley, Phil Hartman, Adam Sandler, Mike Myers, and Dana Carvey. She couldn't keep up. "I lived on pure adrenaline," she says. "You always think you're going to get fired. You're always competing with your cast members for airtime."

Coming up with characters and premises for skits was a supreme struggle. She confesses that one of her funnier sketches — "Jackson's Secrets," in which she wore lingerie and throatily fumbled at being sexy — was a product of begging cast mate Jon Lovitz and writer Conan O'Brien for ideas as they walked down an office hallway.

Her nasal voice nixed nuanced impressions. Besides doing backbends and reading poetry on the "Weekend Update" news desk, impressions of Roseanne Barr and Zsa Zsa Gabor were her only recurring gags.

Critics and former cast mates haven't been kind. Nerve.com recently ranked her dead last of 92 all-time cast members and wrote that her "cute-ditsy-idiot act got pretty thin, [and] it turns out it wasn't an act." And in the 2002 book Live From New York, an oral history of the show, cast mate Jan Hooks sniped, "I just have a particular repulsion to grown women who talk like little girls. It's like, 'You're a grown woman! Use your lower register!' " (Jackson claims her weird voice is the result of a medical defect: a "congenital palatal insufficiency." )

Look, I'm not qualified for this, Jackson recalls thinking. Maybe this is my mission field. I'm supposed to tell my cast members about Jesus!

But Hartman didn't want to talk about the Son of God. And Lovitz asked how Jesus, "a grown man," could have fit in his mother's womb to be born again. When Jackson left audiocassette box sets of the Bible in each cast mate's mail slot for Christmas, they were angrily returned.

Writer and performer Al Franken, now a Democratic U.S. senator for Minnesota, cornered her once, Jackson says. He said he was "offended" by her "ditsy" act. "Maybe I'm overcompensating," she retorted, "because everybody here is dying and going to hell, and I'm supposed to tell them about Jesus."

Franken went white, she says. "He never talked to me again."

Jackson struggled to make the leap to film acting. Her biggest role was as a costar in 1988's Casual Sex?, an insipid rumination on sexual relationships in a post-AIDS world. It flopped. "The movie is exactly like the real thing," the Washington Post opined. "Kinda empty, kinda unfulfilling, and you feel just awful afterward." Jackson also played Weird Al Yankovic's love interest in UHF. Again, not a Brandoesque turn.

Besides the film proceeds, Jackson was making $20,000 per weekly episode of SNL, according to divorce records. In 1991, her ill-conceived marriage to the fire-eater finally came to an end. "He hated me more and more each day," she says. "One night he was fumbling around in the gun closet, and he was drunk, and I thought, Is he going to kill me?"

A Connecticut judge ordered Jackson to pay Eventoff alimony of 15 percent of her income, but not less than $3,000 a month, for three years. He also received a portion of the residuals from her films and, less financially momentous, her catalog of ditties such as "I Am Not a Bimbo" and "I Wanna Be a Slut." (Jackson sells her songs on a self-published CD called Use Me. "Even my friends haven't listened to it," she admits.)

Eventoff declined to be interviewed for this article. Still in Connecticut, he's now known as "the Magic Genie." His website boasts he "offers quality magic tricks at discount prices... He can even levitate one of the children! Fire effects are optional."

After the divorce, Jackson reconnected with her former fiancé from Miami, Paul Wessel. Also divorced, he had become a Miami-Dade Police SWAT officer. In 1984, according to Paul's personnel file, his own partner shot off the tip of Paul's pinkie in a firefight with a drug suspect. In 1991, he killed with a single round an Opa-locka man who pointed a revolver at officers. At an inquest, the man's widow beseeched, "Why did they have to shoot him in the heart?" Paul's lethal actions were ruled justified. One year later, he used a shotgun to obliterate a pit bull that was attacking his partner. To date, Paul has been honored with 71 department commendations.

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10 comments
jaybee
jaybee

Considering all of the drugs the rookie class of SNL were known to do, her current mental state makes perfect sense. I hope I'm as crazy as her when I hit her age.

FQS9000
FQS9000

Would the New Times with this liberal biased hit piece be a flapping arm of the RABID leftists? 

Manny
Manny

You spend so much time trying to denigrate and make fun of honest to God people like this wonderful human being that just proofs that you know they are right, go and kiss Obamas's and all the antiamerican people, I feel sorry for you, you shall never know the beauty of beliening.  Manuel diez

marcinftlaud
marcinftlaud

What I saw in this interview was Victoria Jackson as the Blatant Holier then Thou Bible Beating Political Prostitute, that even though she admitting she knew nothing about politics and rarely voted, but when she called the President of the United States a Muslim, people listen and invited her places, and appears to compensate her for her to speak her Politically Uneducated banter 

Sbebe777
Sbebe777

Proof how parents can fuck up their kids beyond belief!

Pete Pepper
Pete Pepper

Its nice she blames everyone else for her failed career instead of herself.  Yes, its a plot to bring her down.  Wouldnt have anything to do with her insanity and preaching.  No, not that.Sad thing is, she wasnt a bad actress.  Course now we find out that behind the scenes she was torpedoing her own career.

marcinftlaud
marcinftlaud

Hey FQS !!:   She was, it seems, proudly telling her story of being sexually "EASY", and Difficult to work with. These are stories they had to get from her. She was the one that PROUDLY, admitted that she was being paid money and asked to go places, when she stared talking trash about the current "Elected" President ( which the last one was not, he was appointed by a GOP Congress & anointed by a GOP Strong Supreme Court, that had NEVER in history gotten itself involved in the "Peoples Elections ) .

And even more, she admits, to Not knowing anything about politics, nor was she much of an American, because she didn't vote much. Which, just shows she is being a Political prostitute. If she got her political education, by watching one sided slanted (Fuex) news entertainment ( and that is questionable ) and reading Rabid Right Winged , we hate Progressive thought books, by Corporate attack dogs, that want to rule the country for their personal financial greed, then she doesn't come off with ANY credibility ! 

According to the Treaty of Tripoli Article XI, passed by the US Congress in 1797 ( our forefathers - the creators of this nation ) and I quote "The United States is in no sense founded upon the Christian Doctrine. 

Read the real history of this country, which includes actual Congressional records, not the Re-written history created by those that wish to mislead the American Citizenry. 

Pete Pepper
Pete Pepper

Gotta love how the right frightwingers come out of the woodwork to scream hit piece when its an interview using the very words and ideas of the person they want to defend.  What?  She didnt say horrible things?  It was all made up?  Ive seen interviews of her in the past and yes, she really IS this nuts.And what the hell is "beliening"?  Reading and writing is very fundamental if your trying to get a point across.

marcinftlaud
marcinftlaud

Mr. Diez: ( by the way you should always capitalize the 1st letter of your last name )I am not denigrating her, she did that well enough on her own in the interview. She is making a mockery of her beliefs, as she proudly tells the story of her life.And you prove yourself to be an uneducated person with your comments of " kissing the Presidents rear end and calling him and others that support and believe in him Anti-American" Please remember it was George Bush's policies that placed us in the Deep Deep recession, by giving 2 unpaid for Tax breaks to the wealthy, Going into a War by lying to the Congress & the American Public, Not Budgeting 2 wars, but calling for special financial payments for the 2 wars. Also giving Multiple No Bid Contracts to all of His & Dick Cheney's corporate buddies, that basically raided our treasury. 

Before you put fingers to the keyboard, you should turn off Fox ( Fuex ) News programs, and actually read Congressional records.

 
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